November – Making a Commitment

November – Making a Commitment

November - Making a Commitment

On 1st November, we got married! Everyone who knows us has been subjected to months of hearing about our plans, and finally after much anticipation, we got to tie the knot and celebrate with our family, children, friends and clients!

It was a wonderful day of celebration and recognition; of the blurring of lines between clients and friends, between biological family and “step” family, and it was a chance to take stock and reflect on where we are, how far we have come and how proud we are of our family.

As parents, we’re enjoying the challenges and rewards of being a blended family of six unique individuals. Many of the qualities we feel have been so important in bringing our two families together and in raising three teenagers and a pre-teen – kindness, diplomacy, empathy problem-solving (and a working knowledge of psychology and nutrition!) are also really important in the approach we take to our work. Working with clients in the gym is about more than just standing over them and dictating weights, reps and sets – it’s about seeing the person as an individual, and getting to really understand what works for them – and why.

We’ve found that our combined knowledge and differing areas of expertise on strength and conditioning, personal training, nutrition and wellbeing compliment each other perfectly. And our ability to work together on discovering and delivering solutions allows us to provide an overall package for our clients that is more than just the sum of its parts.

We often find ourselves having lengthy discussions about some aspect of training or nutrition that fascinates us or that has come up with clients or family; why is it that teenagers are so drawn to pizza and chocolate? What kind of strength and conditioning programme is really best for a long distance runner? Why are we all so drawn to six week body transformations in January?

It was only after we got married and were thinking about all this stuff – about clients and family and nutrition and training and psychology and wellbeing – that we realised that we absolutely needed to start a podcast. And this is how The Intelligent Fitness Podcast was born!

Noel and Meredith

October – No Human is Limited

October – No Human is Limited

October - No Human is Limited

October has been a fantastic month for running! On October 12th, Kenyan athlete Eliud Kipchoge made history in Vienna when he became the first person to run a marathon in under two hours, and one day later, Brigid Kosegi, also of Kenya, broke the women’s world marathon record in Chicago.

Controversy surrounded Kipchoge’s remarkable run however, as it will not be officially recognised as a world record by the sport’s governing body – because he violated enough rules to make it ineligible to be considered a “real” world record. Which we at Intelligent Fitness feel is entirely fair; world record attempts must by their nature be undertaken on a level playing field.

So what, apart from his extraordinary determination and outstanding athletic ability, caused the controversy? Firstly, he ran with a team of 41 pacers (some of whom were themselves Olympic medallists), in a special V formation to minimise drag. He also used a pacing car 15 metres in front of the pacers, shining a precise laser line onto the road for them to follow, to keep them on track. Add in a cyclist passing his water bottle and the near mythical Nike Vaporfly runners with their carbon fibre plate, and Kipchoge came under intense criticism for using “too much science”, garnering unfair comparisons with Roger Bannister, who ran the first sub-four minute mile in baggy running shorts and battered 1950s leather running spikes.

Fast forward to October 27th in Dublin, to when 18,000 of us mere mortals ran the fantastically well organised and hugely enthusiastically supported KBC Dublin City Marathon (rightly dubbed “the friendly marathon”). I was among those running, enthusiastically high-fiving all the kids, excitedly chatting to my fellow athletes, soaking up the atmosphere… and eventually limping over the finish line in tears, resolving never to put myself through that hideous torture ever again, only to immediately sign up for next year’s race.

Having put myself repeatedly through 26.2 miles of extreme endurance, I fail to understand why, with the benefit of brilliantly engineered running shoes and fascinating scientific advances, the world’s top athletes should be criticised for giving themselves every advantage they could. How lucky we are to live in a time when such incredibly exciting advances are being made in sporting endeavour. With the aid of science, truly no human is limited – and I’m sure Roger Bannister would agree.